The Link Between Diabetes and Obesity

If you have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more, you’re considered obese and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes — a serious health condition that could lead to heart disease, blindness, or amputation.

At Personal Primary Care in the Springfield, Massachusetts, area, we treat overweight and obese patients who have diabetes or prediabetes. Our patients trust us because we provide chronic disease management in a private, comfortable, and nonjudgmental setting. We also offer a weight-loss program or can refer you to a bariatric surgeon to find out if surgery is right for you. 

It all starts with insulin resistance 

Your pancreas makes insulin, a hormone that regulates how much sugar you have in your blood. This sugar, from the foods you eat, is used by your brain, muscles, and liver for energy. But, if you’re obese, you carry excess fat, which makes the cells less responsive to insulin. This is because the fat cells can’t do their jobs properly and get stressed, which leads to an inflammatory response that blocks the signals of insulin receptors. So, when your cells can’t use the glucose (sugar) for energy, you’re left with a high blood glucose level. 

Prediabetes

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 84.1 million Americans had prediabetes in 2015, and they said it could lead to type 2 diabetes within five years if not treated. If your blood sugar level is high, but not high enough to be considered full-blown diabetes, you’ll be diagnosed with prediabetes. It’s characterized by a blood sugar level of 100 to 125 mg/dL. We can help you manage your blood sugar early on, so you don’t develop diabetes. 

Diabetes 

When your blood sugar level reaches 126 mg/dL or higher on two separate tests, you have diabetes. More than 30 million Americans have diabetes. If you’re diagnosed with diabetes, don’t despair. We can help control it with medications while you begin eating better and being more active.

Metabolic syndrome

If you’re obese, you’re also at risk of developing a condition called metabolic syndrome, which increases your chances of getting diabetes. People with this condition may have:

What can you do?

The general guidance is to eat less and move more. You can do this by focusing on a diet full of complex carbohydrates, fresh fruits and vegetables, and lean protein. Also, consider walking a little bit farther each day or learning how to use the equipment at a local gym. Getting proper rest each night helps your body function optimally, which means your metabolic processes and blood sugar will be more stable. 

If you have diabetes and need help losing weight, we offer:

If you’re overweight or obese, the best thing you can do is to lose weight. Even a weight loss of five or ten percent of your current body weight can improve your health and lower your chances of developing diabetes. 

At Personal Primary Care, we help our patients lose weight and manage their diabetes so they can live a long and active life. To learn more about how we can help you, call our office at 413-787-2575 or request an appointment online today.

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